Monday, March 19, 2007
Lola Narcisa Claveria and her 115 year old Auntie in San Juan, Abra in the Philippines
We traveled to San Juan Abra, the northern most tip of Luzon, to Lola Narcisa Claveria's hometown where she and her sisters witnessed their brothers' slaying and their father's torturous death before being kidnapped by Japanese soldiers. The garrison was the town hall in the center of the village. Her Auntie, 115 years old in this picture, had also been kidnapped and placed in the garrison with so many others. On this day in February of 2001, we sit on the floor and unwrap chocolates and feed them to one another. The children spy through an open window, gazing quietly. The old auntie is worried because there is no one home to cook us a meal. We ask her if she knows how old she is. She cannot remember. We ask her if she remembers what happened during the war. Oh that, she says, I can't forget what they did. How can I forget? Did you forget? she wants to know.